Been putting it off for a while, since I could get away with other non-personal posts, but now even though I could do so again this week, I guess it’s time for another post in this series, even if I still don’t have any actual new finds. But that’s unlikely to change in the foreseeable future, since I stopped checking groups or any other sources and don’t see myself getting back to doing that, and there are a lot of bands waiting on the list, so I’ll keep going through them, mainly looking for those with new releases within the past year. However, I’m also starting to look at those that have split up, at least according to Encyclopaedia Metallum, removing just one so far but eventually meaning to only leave the few I really want to include in such posts. Of course, bands may get back together, and if I remove them I won’t check again to know of that, but it likely won’t be such a great loss either way, and I can definitely use ways to cut down that list.
The first band in this post, Kingfisher Sky, is also the one I wanted to include the most. I find myself really liking King of Thieves, and being rather annoyed right now that I have to also listen to what I picked from the other bands in order to write this post instead of just keeping this one on repeat for a while. And the pick from their recent EP, Rain on Your Parade, is quite nice as well. Admittedly, these two songs may not exactly be representative of their others, but again, my picks don’t aim to be anything other than simply songs that I like, and I see myself stuck at least on King of Thieves for a while. I wonder if that wasn’t the case when I first stumbled into them as well.
The second band, Arion, also has some good songs, but a different sound and it’s also rather unusual for these posts, because it doesn’t have female vocals. Or at least the band itself doesn’t, though they do have guest female vocalists on a few songs, including Bloodline… Though you can’t really notice it. It does, however, remain my pick from their recent album, mainly for the message in the lyrics. On the other hand, there are no female vocals on the older song I picked, Unforgivable, but I actually quite like the sound, it has a similar message, and I must also give a nod to title of the album it’s from, Life Is Not Beautiful. Ain’t that a fact, even if so many who can’t or won’t use reason more than to try to rationalize their basic instincts insist on claiming otherwise.
As for the third band, that’s Seraphic and I hesitated about including them, but with their most recent album being released last October and the song I picked from it, Midnight, being posted exactly one year ago, I went with it after all. I must, however, mention that other songs sound better overall, but they also include growls, so I picked this one because it doesn’t, even if something about the vocals makes me wince. The older Fire and Ice actually sounds somewhat better from that point of view.
This will be a particularly rushed addition to this series, but while I still haven’t returned to checking any groups or other sources, and still doubt I will in the foreseeable future, so I still don’t have any actual new finds, I did at least get back to only including bands with recent releases. And I do have a couple of more recent finds that actually are new bands that I keep wanting to include but still can’t because they only have, or at least only officially posted, a single song, so I’m hoping that a second one will appear soon enough and it’ll be at least as good as the first. But, until that happens, I still have plenty of those that were added to the list quite some time ago to go through, and three more are in this post.
Sort of to get it out of the way, I’ll start with Mastercastle, and the reason why I rather want to get it out of the way is that I’m not sure I want to include it in such a post, and was considering removing it from the list at first. However, while they’ve been around for quite some time and their older releases likely wouldn’t have caused me to add them in the first place, their last full album, released in 2017, marks an improvement that is likely the reason why I added them back when I did, by far the most notable example of that improvement being Space of Variations. And that improvement is also noticeable in their recent release, Who Cares for the Moon, so maybe they’ll continue on this path.
Next is Eleine, which is a band that I likely meant to include in such a post so many times that I was certain I already had. One of the reasons why I kept deciding against it is likely embarrassingly shallow, and I’m referring to the fact that I’m very much put off by how their lead vocalist chooses to look. But she has a good voice and vocal lines, and I like the choruses in general. On the other hand, the other parts of their songs tend to sound harsher, and most unfortunately include growls, which is a much stronger and definitely entirely justifiable reason to keep skipping over them. But now I no longer did, and my pick out of their recent songs, Memoriam, shows what they’re capable of. And I’ll go with Devotion for the second pick, as it’s a song that even starts with male vocals and some growls, but I find even those growls tolerable, showing that they can be all right even if they insist on sticking to this sort of sound. I’d much rather they didn’t, of course.
As for the third band, that’s Metalite and the name is definitely appropriate when it comes to their sound, which is indeed “lite” but nevertheless all right to just listen to. What I found rather interesting, however, is that they seem to use that sound to tackle serious matters. Not particularly deeply, if you look at the lyrics, but they quite clearly seem to make a point of it, and have done so all along, my two picks, the recent Peacekeepers and the older Purpose of Life, being good examples of this.
Though the situation mentioned in the previous post from this series hasn’t changed and I therefore don’t have any actual new finds, this just offers me an opportunity to go through the hundreds of bands that have been more or less forgotten on the list, and also once again check the situation of a few I skipped over more recently, to see whether the reasons for not adding them when I previously considered doing so still applied. So, especially if I stick to including just three in a post, it’s easy to find something to add, even if I want to stick to a certain theme, which this time around will again be bands from Italy, and even if I’d also continue to only include bands with new material released within the past year, as I’ve been doing for a while… Until now.
After meaning to include them in earlier posts and eventually deciding against it, this time around I found myself just wanting to start with Ardours even if they more recently seem to be focusing on covers and don’t even have any of those recently released… And also despite the fact that we’re talking of the side project of the female vocalist of Tristania, so those who are interested in the genre likely at least know that they exist. On the other hand, Ardours is nothing like Tristania, having no growls and not sounding harsh, so those who like Tristania may well have no interest in them, just like I find quite a few things to like here but can’t even listen to Tristania. Either way, since there are no multiple albums to select from unless you count covers, I’ll just go with Last Moment and The Mist as my two picks.
The second band is Rebirth, and their name now suits them particularly well, since as far as I can see they hadn’t released anything and may well have been dormant for many years only to recently reappear, with a surprisingly nice sound, Lost being a good example. In fact, after forcing myself to listen to their earlier songs that have vocals, I’d say that their sound is shockingly good now, since those early songs are just a pain to listen to. For that reason, though it’s not something I’d normally do, I decided to not put anyone who may happen to read this through that and choose one of their instrumental songs, Like a Child, as the second pick. Then again, the fact that it seems they had switched entirely to instrumental songs before apparently going dormant may well have been caused by being quite aware of their problems at the time, and even if so many years passed since then, they now returned showing that they clearly found ways to fix them.
As for the third band, that’s Secret Rule, and they really seem to make a point of the messages of their songs. That made it somewhat harder to select my first pick, because I’d have preferred to link to others just because of those messages, but I eventually decided to go with Blunder because I like how it sounds, which is unfortunately not the case for those others. The thing is that their sound can vary a fair bit between songs, but my picks are just personal preferences, not meant to be representative examples, so for the second one I’ll go with The Song of the Universe, which may be the song that made me initially add them to the list, though it’s also possible that they were already on it when I first heard it. Either way, I clearly remember it, and the powerful vocals stand out, compared to their other songs as well.
Since the event I was relying on for a quick post today, or more exactly the part of it that I was interested in, was postponed, I guess it’s time for another really rushed addition to this series. I haven’t checked any group in quite some time, and now I’m even less likely to check groups at all because Facebook yet again changed the design for the worse and I no longer have a sidebar at all on my lists, so I’m not normally reminded of groups, and the number of new posts in groups doesn’t seem to show up at all anymore, so I don’t know the amount of activity I should be prepared to go through and whether I’ll have the time and the state of mind to do so even if I specifically want to check them. But going through that differently ordered version of my list fortunately led me relatively quickly to a few more recent releases I hadn’t been aware of, so I’ll use those for this post.
I’ll start with Aeranea, who recently released an album that also seems to have a message to send. And, despite rushing, I did listen to two other songs from it, but since Your Idols Awaken is the only one that’s posted on their official YouTube channel, I’ll go with that as the first pick. And Prayers Die will be the second one, out of their older songs. Seeing as they seem to have been added on my list quite a number of years ago, it seems likely that this song is the one that made me put them there, and as I just went through them quickly, I was even tempted to say that I still prefer it over any of the others that they posted officially. But there are good elements in the others as well, and listening again might change my opinion.
Next comes a solo project, that of Lindsay Schoolcraft. If I wouldn’t have been rushing to post this today, I likely wouldn’t have included her now, because it seems that she’s days away from releasing new material. But there are other songs that are recent enough, and I’ll go with Worlds Away as the first pick, while the second, out of the slightly older ones, is Where I Fall. The songs I listened to can differ a fair bit, others having a heavier sound and even featuring male growlers, and since I just listened to what’s posted on the official YouTube channel, as I usually do when it comes to such quick posts, I have no idea which kind dominates, if any. But these picks aren’t supposed to be representative in any way, after all, but just some selections according strictly to my own preferences out of the songs I happened to listen to, and these definitely fit that “requirement” and are better than many others I included in such posts.
Getting back to bands, I’ll finish this post with The Fall of Eve, and the quick pick from their recent album is Stay with Me. As for the second pick, I’ll go with If Even Angels Fall, which I remembered almost as soon as I started listening to it now, though I’m quite sure it’s been quite a long time since I last did so. Actually, it was the fact that I remembered this one so well that made the difference, as there were a couple of others I was considering as well, and the first pick could have also been either of the two from their recent album that they posted on their official YouTube channel, so they have quite a number of good songs, at least in my view.
Sunday I couldn’t stay on-line to listen and pick, but the next non-personal post still has to be another quick addition to this series, so I’ll get right to it, starting with Liliumdust, which is a new band that currently just has one lyric video uploaded, for Survivor, so that will have to be my first pick and it’s what made me pay attention to them. Now that I did, however, I’ll say that their best song so far, at least in my opinion, is Dusk, and overall they’re a promising band, with a good sound and members that are sufficiently experienced to get right to it, without seeming hesitant or uncertain of their desired direction. To put it bluntly, they’re clearly the best of the three bands included in this post.
The second band is Epinikon and it doesn’t even have an entry on Metal Archives yet. But they did release two songs, In the Middle of the Night and Strangers in the Dark, so I can include them in such a post. That uncertainty when it comes to the sound is quite obvious in their case, however, so what I can say at this point is that there are good parts in those songs and the vocals are better than I’ve come to expect from such bands, and it remains to be seen which way they’ll go and how well they’ll smooth out the rougher edges… Assuming they’ll last long enough to do so, of course, inexperienced people launching a new band at this time still facing even more hurdles than they’d have faced before the start of 2020, even if the world is in a better situation than it’s been in since then.
The third band is Era of Ephemeris and, while I heard of them thanks to their recent release, Secret Garden, they’ve been around for a few years and the one earlier song that they properly posted separately is Ancestral Vision, so that will have to be my second pick. This latter song again reveals itself as an early effort, but there are good elements and, while not as much as I’d have liked, I’m noticing some improvements between the two, so they at least seem to be on the right path, more or less.